By Michael Salerno
For Hometown News
SOUTH DAYTONA -- Police Chief Bill Hall, who will retire from his post next month, was recently recognized at a South Daytona Historical Society meeting where his mother was the guest lecturer.
The 54-year-old chief, who spent 33 years of his 35-year law enforcement career working in South Daytona, was given a framed certificate thanking him for his early support of the historical society, which was formed last year.
Phil Trimarchi, president of the historical society, said society members wished to honor Chief Hall before his upcoming retirement for helping the society by giving them historical information on past police chiefs, as well as office space in the Citizens Alert office at Sunshine Park Mall.
"We wanted to thank him for his help in getting us situated in the Sunshine Park Mall (office)," Mr. Trimarchi said. "... (Chief Hall) was always available to help with any research, like the former police chiefs, so we could piece together our (city's) history."
Chief Hall received the certificate following a history lecture given by his mother, Ramona Jones Hall, who grew up on Reed Canal Road in the 1950s. Ms. Hall, whose family moved to the city from Port Orange, spoke of a time when there were dairy farms instead of strip malls along the street corners, when her father built a mobile home park where rent was $10 a month, and when she learned to drive on her own, because there was no such thing as driver's education at the time.
The chief wasn't the only person with ties to the city's police department to receive special recognition from the historical society this month.
The historical society also saluted Russell Milne Jr., whose father Russell Milne Sr. was a former police chief. The younger Mr. Milne wrote a historical account of his father's life called "Orphan Boy" -- named so because Mr. Milne's father was orphaned at age 5. The account included details of his work in South Daytona's police force.
Kay Stanton, planner and corresponding secretary of the historical society, said she found out about the book while researching the elder Mr. Milne and his life and work in South Daytona. She contacted Mr. Milne asking if he would be interested in donating a copy, and two days later he visited Ms. Stanton's house to hand-sign a copy for the historical society.
"(The book is) a short but delightful memory of a father's life," Ms. Stanton said. "I'm so glad I got to read it."
The historical society's next meeting on Jan. 7 will feature two former mayors as speakers, Dan O'Brien and Clifford "Buzzy" Windle.